Today Won’t Come Tomorrow
“I hate you,” she said with a steel-piercing gaze. He sat silently. “Everything that is you, I don’t like and I am stuck with you, lying to all who ask about how great you are and wishing I could believe it. I can’t stand it, them, us. We have nothing. We are nothing but a failed dream of you being a man.” Still he sat; her anger was as fierce as her passion. “Do you have nothing to add? I can’t believe that you, of all people, have nothing to say.” “How could I have nothing to say?” he said to her. “With the world dying at its seams and you yelling in my brain, telling me that I ain’t worth a damn, how could I have nothing to say?” She turned and went to the bathroom mirror, where she could continue speaking while hiding her grace behind a veil of carefully applied powders and compounds. “I don’t mean to offend you but I just don’t see a future with you. I can’t find that reason that made me feel like you were the one because I don’t believe it anymore.” She spoke as she pulled her hair back from her face, cursing the few strains of grey peaking out the flowing mane. She brushed a powder over her face in the first step to hide the lines next to her eyes. He felt a deep sadness looking at her when he could see that she had cried more than anyone had known. She would clench her jaw in the face of suffering in public, but felt tremendous sorrow at the world and worry over her place in it. The foundation could not hide the deep lines from the sad curve of her mouth. She liked to believe that she was a happy person but the handful in her circle knew differently. The sign of age bothered her.
He had tried to remind her that aging was not ugly. “Aging shows the depth of a person’s experiences,” he told her over peanut butter and jelly sandwiches he made one afternoon they had used to refinish a pair of yard-sale chairs. “Oh, come on, do you think old people are pretty?” “Why is pretty so fucking important?” “So people don’t know how filthy life is.” Her response made his chest shudder and made his eyes want to cry. He closed his eyes and listened to the breeze bring mollifying change to all things. “Is life really that wretched?” “Some days, yes.” “Today?” “No, today is all right,” she smiled at admitting what she had become afraid to feel. That memory flitted through her presence as she filled her brush with something to shade her features. The make-up kit’s smell, reminiscent of that time, pulled the past to her and she could feel the leaves dance together in those branches so high overhead. The beautiful woman looking back at her surprised the memory to its elegant vault and brought a smile to her eyes.